Match Report
Bloxham School Yearlings B vs  Pangbourne College
On: Saturday, 14 Oct 2017
Venue: at Home

After a tough game back in September, Bloxham put in their strongest performance of the season to overcome Pangbourne 41-10. In a complete reversal of last week, Bloxham scored within 20 seconds following a fantastic length of the pitch kick-off return from Alex Myles. Pangbourne replied with a try of their own after 5 minutes, however Bloxham then began to pull away, with Alex Myles scoring two further tries including one from a particularly well executed lineout move. Further tries were scored by Sam Kentigern-Fox who followed up his own kick well to ground the ball first, and Harry Cooke following a good pass from Ben Ash.

Bloxham went in 27-5 up at half time, although Pangbourne responded with a try of their own shortly after the re-start. Any fears of a Pangbourne comeback were however extinguished by tries from Oliver Lester and Toby Bint. Oliver’s try was particularly pleasing, with Bloxham making good use of an overlap, culminating in Harry Cooke putting Oliver over in the corner for a very well taken try.

This was an impressive team performance, in which every player gave of his all. Particular praise must go to Hamish Richards, who got through a phenomenal amount of tackling in the back row, preventing the Pangbourne 9 and 10 from getting into any real rhythm. Bloxham’s ball retention got progressively stronger as the game progressed, with George Miley, Ed Baker and Jamie Walton getting through a lot of work. Isaac Myles, Geronimo Neate-James and Toby Bint all carried the ball well, helping to lay a strong attacking platform for the team.

In the backs, the growing confidence of the team was evident with the more frequent use of planned moves, and the combination of Ben Ash, Jonny Wilkinson and Harry Cooke at 10,12 and 13 worked well, with Jonny- captain for the day particularly resolute in defence. Charlie Penfold also impressed in defence, making a number of strong tackles on the Pangbourne Number 8, who was an extremely effective ball carrier.

As the game progressed, the opportunity was taken to try students in slightly less familiar positions; Cameron Smith (who converted three tries) showed strong positional awareness and good hands when moved to full back making two impressive kick returns, and Henry White showed impressive stamina when moved to the back row- often being the first person to the breakdown. Peter Elliot’s move from the centre to the wing also gave him a little more in the way of running potential, providing him with more opportunity to influence the game.

Overall this was an impressive performance, which owed a lot to the attitude of the boys. Tough games lie ahead next half term in the form of Merchant Taylors’ and Bishop Vesey’s, however Bloxham will go into the half term in good spirits.